Wawa Foundation Hero Award

The Wawa Foundation Hero Award honors a non-profit organization that is committed to serving the greater Philadelphia area.

What Makes a Hero? You Decide!

The Wawa Foundation Hero Award annually recognizes one non-profit organization that has gone above and beyond in helping protect and uplift the community, inspire the youth, and improve the greater Philadelphia area.

Thank you to all who have nominated organizations this year. Entries are now closed for the 2019 Wawa Foundation Hero Award.

Click below to read more about these organizations and their contributions to the community. The winner will be selected by YOU! Voting is open from now until June 16th. *Limit one vote per person.

Finalists include:

ASAP/After School Activities Partnership

    • Founded in 2002, ASAP is Philadelphia’s leading after-school partner and advocate. Through four citywide initiatives- ASAP Chess, ASAP Debate, ASAP Drama, and ASAP Scrabble- ASAP engages 5,000 kids annually in after-school programs that complement classroom learning and foster a sense of belonging among diverse groups of youth. ASAP’s work is made possible by caring adults – including teachers, community leaders, and volunteers who lend their time and talent after school to enrich the lives of young people and strengthen communities. For more information, click here.

Big Brothers Big Sisters Independence

    • Big Brothers Big Sisters Independence (BBBSI) engages thousands of volunteers who give their precious time to mentor youth throughout Southeastern Pennsylvania and Southern New Jersey. Founded in 1915, BBBSI has positively impacted the lives of over 125,000 youth over the past century. The organization is best known for its evidence-based mentoring programs in which more than 3,100 youth per year are professionally supported and empowered to achieve their full potential. These programs are designed to create positive youth outcomes, including educational success, avoidance of risky behaviors, higher aspirations, greater confidence, and improved relationships. BBBSI additionally works with other mentoring organizations in the area, providing best practices training and technical assistance to ensure all youth have access to high quality mentors and high quality mentoring programs. For more information, click here.


    • For more than 30 years, Esperanza has been empowering those on a pathway out of poverty in the Hunting Park section of North Philadelphia by offering programs that cultivate self-belief, grit, and knowledge acquisition, allowing clients to develop agency, voice, and influence over their own lives. Esperanza’s programs help individuals at all stages of their lives to accumulate assets (economic, physical, and psychological) that together generate an effective toolkit of skills for successful advancement. The organization offers a diverse range of programs designed to prepare the next generation of community leaders, including secondary education, youth civic engagement, community STEM education, and arts education. For more information, click here.

Pennsylvania Center for Adaptive Sports

    • The Pennsylvania Center for Adapted Sports operates 13 sport-and-wellness programs year-round, with a focus on building inclusive communities for individuals with disabilities in a barrier-free and supportive setting. PCAS serves over 500 individuals with disabilities annually reaching, together with their families, over 2,000 people out of its Philadelphia facility. Participants include children, adults, seniors, and veterans and active duty military personnel with disabilities. Each year, athletes and volunteers dedicate countless hours to helping enable people with disabilities improve their health and wellness as well as activity levels. For more information, click here.


Not only will the winning organization be rewarded a $50,000 grant, but each of the remaining organizations will receive a $10,000 grant. The award will be presented during the Celebration of Freedom Ceremony on July 4th in front of Independence Hall.

The Wawa Foundation Hero Award honors a non-profit organization who continuously makes efforts to improve the community, educate and inspire our youth, empower citizens, and preserving the freedom of the people.